PayPal drops WikiLeaks following cable controversy

By Mike Fischer on December 6, 2010, 9:30 AM
Over the weekend the battle to take down WikiLeaks grew even more complex: PayPal joined the fray by terminating the WikiLeaks donation account, citing a violation of its terms of service. "Our payment service cannot be used for any activities that encourage, promote, facilitate or instruct others to engage in illegal activity," a PayPal blog post reads. This follows worldwide pressure against WikiLeaks after it announced its intention to release thousands of confidential U.S. diplomatic cables.

The account in question was operated by the German Wau Holland Foundation which provided financial support to WikiLeaks. The shutdown was effective as of Saturday, leaving supporters with several less convenient methods for making donations, including mailing an Australian post office box, making transfers to European banks, and using a Swiss credit card service.

All of this comes hot on the heels of recent domain name cutoffs and denial of service attacks aimed at making WikiLeaks less accessible. Amazon also severed ties with the site last week in order to minimize its connection with the leaked documents. WikiLeaks blames PayPal's actions on pressure from the U.S. government, which is conducting a criminal investigation into the leaks.


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